Bus lanes for Eastbourne Road and Victoria Drive set for approval

Proposed bus lane in Eastbourne Road
Proposed bus lane in Eastbourne Road

Revised plans for bus lanes and junction improvements to increase sustainable transport between Polegate and Eastbourne are set to be approved next week.

A number of infrastructure changes have been identified as being necessary to mitigate the impact of proposed large-scale development across the south Wealden and Eastbourne areas.

While changes to the key A22 and A27 junctions are being explored, it was also recognised improvements to the local road network were required to facilitate a change in the use of sustainable transport.

The Hailsham/Polegate/Eastbourne Movement and Access Corridor study was commissioned and a public consultation held between September and November 2017 on the first phase of proposed improvements mainly in the Willingdon area.

A package of proposals is set to be approved by East Sussex County Council’s lead member for transport and environment on Monday (June 18).

Funding totalling £2.1m for the first phase of improvements was secured from the Local Growth Fund through the South East Local Enterprise Partnership.

Capacity improvements are set to be made to the junction of Wannock Road with Polegate’s high street.

A left-turn slip road from the High Street into Eastbourne Road would be introduced, there would be an extra lane for vehicles travelling north along Eastbourne Road as well as an additional lane on the northern side of the junction for extra northbound traffic, and pedestrian phases on all arms of the junction.

On the Eastbourne Road bus lanes would be introduced southbound from Thurrock Close to Huggett’s Lane, northbound from Thurrock Close to Broad Road and northbound from Coopers Hill to Huggett’s Lane.

A new off-road footway/cyleway on the eastern side of the road between Broad Road and Huggett’s Lane will be considered.

The traffic signals at Hugett’s Lane will be upgraded to accommodate a bus gate and toucan crossing as well as cycle advanced stop lines.

A new 30mph speed limit would be introduced for Eastbourne Road between Coopers Hill and the A27 junction in Polegate.

A northbound bus lane would also be created in Victoria Drive from Newick Road to the junction with Willingdon Road.

Separately bus stops will be improved along the length of the phase one corridor.

According to an officers’ report due to be discussed on Monday: “The increase in traffic generated from the proposed additional housing and employment in the South Wealden and Eastbourne area, will result in increased levels of congestion on the road network unless a package of mitigation measures is delivered.

“The Hailsham/Polegate/Eastbourne Movement and Access Corridor study identified the need for improvements to key junctions, along with the provision of bus lanes and other bus infrastructure together with new cycle routes and pedestrian improvements.

“The first phase of the movement and access corridor proposals, focussed on the A2270 corridor from the Wannock Road/Polegate High Street junction to Victoria Drive through Polegate Willingdon and Ratton, were consulted upon in Autumn 2017. The responses and comments made by local residents and stakeholders through the consultation process have helped shape the recommended package of phase one improvements, as set out in paragraph 2.4 of the report, to be taken forward to detailed design and construction.”

Future phases for other sections of the corridor will be brought forward by the county council and consulted on ‘in due course’.